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September 4, 2018 - America's Cup Overture

04/09/2018


Sail-World NZ e-magazine - Sept 4, 2018 - America's Cup Overture

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Black Jack powers up - Hamilton Island Race Week - August 2018, Day 1 - photo © Richard Gladwell


Dear Recipient Name


Welcome to Sail-World.com's New Zealand e-magazine for September 4, 2018

The 36th America's Cup Regatta was officially launched last Friday, in Cowes. Well for the Challengers, anyway.

The event at the birthplace of the America's Cup was followed in the evening with a Black-Tie dinner the Royal Yacht Squadron and The Castle, organised by the America's Cup Hall of Fame to induct four new members: John Marshall (USA), Syd Fischer (AUS), Doug Peterson (USA) and Ken McAlpine (AUS).

The launch function, entitled the America's Cup Overture, was organised by Prada and the Challenger of Record.

America's Cup Overture, Cowes - August 31, 2018 - photo © INEOS Team UK
America's Cup Overture, Cowes - August 31, 2018 - photo © INEOS Team UK

Earlier in the day, the British Challenger INEOS Team UK released their first video of the prototype 28ft foiling monohull, sailed by Ben Ainslie and Giles Scott. It is a high definition, unlike the previous spectator supplied versions - which reveal very little other than the boat exists and is foiling.

While the Brits claim the prototype is 40% of the AC75, but as a proportion of overall length it is actually 37.3% of the real thing.

However comparing the proportions of the 28fter overlaid onto her 75ft big sister, the AC75 has an enormous rig, and one can only guess at the sailing performance. As we have reported earlier, the 28fter is producing similar performances to the AC50 in comparable wind conditions.

America's Cup AC75 - America's Cup Hall of Fame Induction, Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes IOW, August 31, 2018 - photo © Carlo Borlenghi
America's Cup AC75 - America's Cup Hall of Fame Induction, Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes IOW, August 31, 2018 - photo © Carlo Borlenghi

What is not known is whether the 28fter is using proportionally sized foils, and whether they are weighted proportionally to produce proportional righting moment.

There are two things which come from the video.

INEOS Team UK sail their surrogate Quant 28 mimicing the AC75  - photo © INEOS Team UK
INEOS Team UK sail their surrogate Quant 28 mimicing the AC75 - photo © INEOS Team UK

Firstly the "Driving Miss Daisy" style or very relaxed sailing manner of Ainslie and Scott. While the 28fter is probably using a fully automated flight control system, the whole package seems to be very controlled and stable.

With just two crew sailing a 28fter that is short-handed sailing by most standards.

Secondly, there is a spill almost at the end of the video clip when the windward wing catches the water and spins the 28fter to windward in quite a violent fashion. While this seems to have little effect on the crew who are sitting down, it will be interesting to see what happens with the bigger AC75, travelling faster and with some of the crew on grinders.

Ben Ainslie and Giles Scott sail T5 (surrogate Quant 28 mimicing the AC75) in the Solent - photo © INEOS TEAM UK
INEOS Team UK's prototype 28fter compared with the AC75 - photo © INEOS TEAM UK

The other announcement on Friday by Emirates Team New Zealand was on the courses.

The Defender has taken the unusual approach of nominating five course locations which can be used depending on the wind direction.

The usual way has been to designate a race area, circular in shape and then lay the course configuration within that circle.

The approach that will be adopted for the 36th America's Cup is to move to a location where a windward leeward course can be laid for a particular wind direction. This has two advantages - first it enables the racing to be held close to shore; and second, it keeps the foiling AC75's in relatively flat water.

The five course areas designated in the inner Hauraki Gulf - the land adjacent to course B is a 850ft volcanic cone. North Head and a second volcanic cone, Mt Victoria are also substantial obstructions - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand
The five course areas designated in the inner Hauraki Gulf - the land adjacent to course B is a 850ft volcanic cone. North Head and a second volcanic cone, Mt Victoria are also substantial obstructions - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand

It should also reduce the number of spectator boats and their attendant wakes

For sure the idea has gone down well with those who are Cup fans and quite prepared to compromise the traditional race course - in order to watch the racing literally taking place at their feet. There are many locations which will allow the fans to look down into the AC75's while they are racing.

If they take a pair of binoculars and a device that will show a graphics package and give a commentary, plus some close up on board video, then that will certainly be a new America's Cup viewing package. And all for free.

AC75 yachts racing on a course in the outer Waitemata Harbour off North Head - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand
AC75 yachts racing on a course in the outer Waitemata Harbour off North Head - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand

Today Spark and Emirates Team New Zealand announced they'd formed a "telecommunications and connectivity" partnership utilising 5G technology. Quite what that means for fans is not exactly clear at this stage - but it is all upside and hopefully will include a 360VR live application. In simple terms that means with the assistance of a set of Virtual Reality goggles, and a mobile phone, you will be able to be on the AC75, and see a 360-degree view of the racing just by turning your head as you would in real life.

The product was available for the last America's Cup, but not live - and it is a very informative way of experiencing the race action and seeing exactly how the crew sail the boat.

Rob Greenhalgh, Wouter Verbraak, Juan Vila, Iain Percy, Sharon Ferris-Choat - photo © Kurt Arrigo
Rob Greenhalgh, Wouter Verbraak, Juan Vila, Iain Percy, Sharon Ferris-Choat - photo © Kurt Arrigo

In this edition, we feature the first of a two-part series based on a media conference given by five top sailors at the Hamilton Island Race Week. Artemis Racing's Iain Percy, MAPFRE's Rob Greenhalgh and Juan Vila, along with Sharon Ferris-Choat (NZL) and Wouter Verbraak (NED) covered a lot of ground - from why Artemis Racing won't enter the next America's Cup; what they think of the AC75; Women's sailing; why the Dutch are probably the top sailors in the world at present, and more.

There's a second part coming tomorrow, which focuses more on the Volvo Ocean Race, with their thoughts on the new boat and race, how Leg 11 played out in the 2017/18 Volvo Ocean Race and more.

The Sharon Ferris-Choat (NZL) skippered Ave Gitana is well ahead of the fleet on Day 2 of Hamilton Island Race Week - August - photo © Richard Gladwell
The Sharon Ferris-Choat (NZL) skippered Ave Gitana is well ahead of the fleet on Day 2 of Hamilton Island Race Week - August - photo © Richard Gladwell

Follow all the racing and developments in major and local events on Sail-World.com by scrolling to the top of the site, select New Zealand, and get all the latest news and updates from the sailing world.

All stories are available on Sail-World.com/nz

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

 
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View from North Head looking east - the two AC75's are sailing on Course C. Course D is further to the left, further out to the east and too distant for shore viewing - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand
View from North Head looking east - the two AC75's are sailing on Course C. Course D is further to the left, further out to the east and too distant for shore viewing - photo © Emirates Team New Zealand
 
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Bruno Trouble, John Marshall, Patrizio Bertelli, Tom Schnackenberg and Gary Jobson - America's Cup Hall of Fame Induction, Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes IOW, August 31, 2018 - photo © Carlo Borlenghi
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